The War of the Worlds: Chapter 17
The further we get in the story, the less likely it seems that any avenue of escape we chose back in chapter 14 of The War of the Worlds would have been doomed to failure - even if The Grand Sophy had arranged it all for us.
Chapter 17 laid out the over-congested roadways out of London and painted pretty much the same on the waterways for those "fortunate" enough to have the money or means to flee over water instead of land.
Soooo many awesome quotes from this chapter, too!
p. 100 - "Never before in the history of the world had such a mass of human beings moved and suffered together."
"...this was no disciplined march; it was a stampede - a stampede gigantic and terrible - without order and without a goal, SIX MILLION PEOPLE, unarmed and unprovisioned, driving headlong. It was the beginning of...the massacre of mankind."
p. 101 - "They do not seem to have aimed at extermination so much as the complete demoralization and the destruction of any opposition... They were hamstringing mankind."
The horse being taken with a promise of part of the share of it the following day? #perspective
Having to take to the water only to have the boat stop and stop and stop and stop and...would be so frustrating when you were in flight mode.
Then when you were finally making headway to see a Marian appear on the horizon would be horrifying!
And then another...
I totally would have been one of the folks on deck cheering and shouting as the Thunder Child engaged the Martians in battle - in fact, it was on page 106 that I realized my mouth was hung open as I read, imagining the scene playing out as clearly in my mind's eye as any real-life memory I have! (Now THAT is expert writing!)
In case you, too, were wondering what the Thunder Child was, here is a link.
What some of our members said:
"This chapter was absolutely filled with action and all the angst that goes with it! Phew! And seeing those Martians out on the water, with more coming? Talk about the “flight” response; we already know the “fight” part is pretty much useless so having to keep stopping when all we want to do is run away makes me really anxious sitting here!"
"Lots of action for sure! I really needed a map to reference during this chapter because I was starting to feel overwhelmed by the almost continual list of locations early in the chapter. What an ending though...'And as it flew it rained down darkness upon the land'." (In case you are longing for a lay of the land, here's a map.)